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Shakespeare Tragedies/ Trauerspielen, Bilingual Edition (all 11 plays in English with line numbers plus 8 of those in German translation)
Shakespeare Tragedies/ Trauerspielen, Bilingual Edition (all 11 plays in English with line numbers plus 8 of those in German translation)
Shakespeare Tragedies/ Trauerspielen, Bilingual Edition (all 11 plays in English with line numbers plus 8 of those in German translation)
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Shakespeare Tragedies/ Trauerspielen, Bilingual Edition (all 11 plays in English with line numbers plus 8 of those in German translation)

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All 11 Shakespeare tragedies in English, with line numbers, plus eight of them in German translation.The ones in both English and German are: Coriolanus, Hamlet, King Lear, Macbeth, Othello, Romeo and Juliet, and Timon of Athens. Translated by Dorothea Tieck, Christoph Martin Wieland, and August Wilhelm von Schlegel
HerausgeberSeltzer Books
Erscheinungsdatum1. März 2018
Shakespeare Tragedies/ Trauerspielen, Bilingual Edition (all 11 plays in English with line numbers plus 8 of those in German translation)
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William Shakespeare

William Shakespeare was an English poet, playwright, and actor. He is widely regarded as the greatest dramatist in the English language. Shakespeare is often called England’s national poet and the “Bard of Avon.”  

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    Shakespeare Tragedies/ Trauerspielen, Bilingual Edition (all 11 plays in English with line numbers plus 8 of those in German translation) - William Shakespeare


    published by Samizdat Express, Orange, CT, USA

    established in 1974, offering over 14,000 books

    Collections of Shakespeare in German translation:

    Shakespeare's Tragedies in German

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    Dramatis Personae

    Antony And Cleopatra

    Act I

    Scene I Alexandria. A room in Cleopatra's palace.

    Scene II The same. Another room.

    Scene III The same. Another room.

    Scene IV Rome. Octavius Caesar's house.

    Scene V Alexandria. Cleopatra's palace.

    Act II

    Scene I Messina. Pompey's house.

    Scene II Rome. The house of Lepidus.

    Scene III The same. Octavius Caesar's house.

    Scene IV The same. A street.

    Scene V Alexandria. Cleopatra's palace.

    Scene VI Near Misenum.

    Scene VII On board Pompey's galley, off Misenum.

    Act III

    Scene I A plain in Syria.

    Scene II Rome. An ante-chamber in Octavius Caesar's house.

    Scene III Alexandria. Cleopatra's palace.

    Scene IV Athens. A room in Mark Antony's house.

    Scene V The same. Another room.

    Scene VI Rome. Octavius Caesar's house.

    Scene VII Near Actium. Mark Antony's camp.

    Scene VIII A plain near Actium.

    Scene IX Another part of the plain.

    Scene X Another part of the plain.

    Scene XI Alexandria. Cleopatra's palace.

    Scene XII Egypt. Octavius Caesar's camp.

    Scene XIII Alexandria. Cleopatra's palace.

    Act IV

    Scene I Before Alexandria. Octavius Caesar's camp.

    Scene II Alexandria. Cleopatra's palace.

    Scene III The same. Before the palace.

    Scene IV The same. A room in the palace.

    Scene V Alexandria. Mark Antony's camp.

    Scene VI Alexandria. Octavius Caesar's camp.

    Scene VII Field of battle between the camps.

    Scene VIII Under the walls of Alexandria.

    Scene IX Octavius Caesar's camp.

    Scene X Between the two camps.

    Scene XI Another part of the same.

    Scene XII Another part of the same.

    Scene XIII Alexandria. Cleopatra's palace.

    Scene XIV The same. Another room.

    Scene XV The same. A monument.

    Act V

    Scene I Alexandria. Octavius Caesar's camp.

    Scene II Alexandria. A room in the monument.



    Mark Antony

    Octavius Caesar

    M. Aemilius

    Lepidus (Lepidus:) |

    Sextus Pompeius (Pompey:)

    Friends To Antony

    Domitius Enobarbus






    Philo |

    Friends To Caesar







    Friends To Pompey




    Taurus, Lieutenant-General To Caesar.

    Canidius, Lieutenant-General To Antony.

    Silius, An Officer In Ventidius's Army.

    Euphronius, An Ambassador From Antony To Caesar.

    Attendants On Cleopatra


    Mardian, A Eunuch.



    A Soothsayer. (Soothsayer:)

    A Clown. (Clown:)

    Cleopatra, Queen Of Egypt.

    Octavia, Sister To Caesar And Wife To Antony.

    Attendants On Cleopatra



     Officers, Soldiers, Messengers, and other Attendants.

     (First Officer:)

     (Second Officer:)

     (Third Officer:)


     (Second Messenger:)

     (First Servant:)

     (Second Servant:)



     (First Guard:)

     (Second Guard:)


     (First Attendant:)

     (Second Attendant:)

    SCENE In several parts of the Roman empire.


    ACT I

    SCENE I Alexandria. A room in Cleopatra's palace.

     [Enter DEMETRIUS and PHILO]

    (1) PHILO Nay, but this dotage of our general's

     O'erflows the measure: those his goodly eyes,

     That o'er the files and musters of the war

     Have glow'd like plated Mars, now bend, now turn,

     The office and devotion of their view

     Upon a tawny front: his captain's heart,

     Which in the scuffles of great fights hath burst

     The buckles on his breast, reneges all temper,

     And is become the bellows and the fan

     To cool a gipsy's lust.

     [Flourish. Enter ANTONY, CLEOPATRA, her Ladies,

     the Train, with Eunuchs fanning her]

    (10)    Look, where they come:

     Take but good note, and you shall see in him.

     The triple pillar of the world transform'd

     Into a strumpet's fool: behold and see.

    CLEOPATRA If it be love indeed, tell me how much.

    MARK ANTONY There's beggary in the love that can be reckon'd.

    CLEOPATRA I'll set a bourn how far to be beloved.

    MARK ANTONY Then must thou needs find out new heaven, new earth.

     [Enter an ATTENDANT]

    ATTENDANT News, my good lord, from Rome.

    MARK ANTONY Grates me: the sum.

    CLEOPATRA Nay, hear them, Antony:

    (20) Fulvia perchance is angry; or, who knows

     If the scarce-bearded Caesar have not sent

     His powerful mandate to you, 'Do this, or this;

     Take in that kingdom, and enfranchise that;

     Perform 't, or else we damn thee.'

    MARK ANTONY How, my love!

    CLEOPATRA Perchance! nay, and most like:

     You must not stay here longer, your dismission

     Is come from Caesar; therefore hear it, Antony.

     Where's Fulvia's process? Caesar's I would say? both?

     Call in the messengers. As I am Egypt's queen,

    (30) Thou blushest, Antony; and that blood of thine

     Is Caesar's homager: else so thy cheek pays shame

     When shrill-tongued Fulvia scolds. The messengers!

    MARK ANTONY Let Rome in Tiber melt, and the wide arch

     Of the ranged empire fall! Here is my space.

     Kingdoms are clay: our dungy earth alike

     Feeds beast as man: the nobleness of life

     Is to do thus; when such a mutual pair


     And such a twain can do't, in which I bind,

     On pain of punishment, the world to weet

     We stand up peerless.

    (40) CLEOPATRA Excellent falsehood!

     Why did he marry Fulvia, and not love her?

     I'll seem the fool I am not; Antony

     Will be himself.

    MARK ANTONY                   But stirr'd by Cleopatra.

     Now, for the love of Love and her soft hours,

     Let's not confound the time with conference harsh:

     There's not a minute of our lives should stretch

     Without some pleasure now. What sport tonight?

    CLEOPATRA Hear the ambassadors.

    MARK ANTONY Fie, wrangling queen!

     Whom every thing becomes, to chide, to laugh,

    (50) To weep; whose every passion fully strives

     To make itself, in thee, fair and admired!

     No messenger, but thine; and all alone

     To-night we'll wander through the streets and note

     The qualities of people. Come, my queen;

     Last night you did desire it: speak not to us.

     [Exeunt MARK ANTONY and CLEOPATRA with

     their train]

    DEMETRIUS Is Caesar with Antonius prized so slight?

    PHILO Sir, sometimes, when he is not Antony,

     He comes too short of that great property

     Which still should go with Antony.

    DEMETRIUS I am full sorry

    (60) That he approves the common liar, who

     Thus speaks of him at Rome: but I will hope

     Of better deeds to-morrow. Rest you happy!


    SCENE II The same. Another room.


    (1) CHARMIAN Lord Alexas, sweet Alexas, most any thing Alexas,

     almost most absolute Alexas, where's the soothsayer

     that you praised so to the queen? O, that I knew

     this husband, which, you say, must charge his horns

     with garlands!

    ALEXAS Soothsayer!

    SOOTHSAYER Your will?

    CHARMIAN Is this the man? Is't you, sir, that know things?

    SOOTHSAYER In nature's infinite book of secrecy

     A little I can read.

    (10) ALEXAS Show him your hand.


    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Bring in the banquet quickly; wine enough

     Cleopatra's health to drink.

    CHARMIAN Good sir, give me good fortune.

    SOOTHSAYER I make not, but foresee.

    CHARMIAN Pray, then, foresee me one.

    SOOTHSAYER You shall be yet far fairer than you are.

    CHARMIAN He means in flesh.

    IRAS No, you shall paint when you are old.

    CHARMIAN Wrinkles forbid!

    (20) ALEXAS Vex not his prescience; be attentive.

    CHARMIAN Hush!

    SOOTHSAYER You shall be more beloving than beloved.

    CHARMIAN I had rather heat my liver with drinking.

    ALEXAS Nay, hear him.

    CHARMIAN Good now, some excellent fortune! Let me be married

     to three kings in a forenoon, and widow them all:

     let me have a child at fifty, to whom Herod of Jewry

     may do homage: find me to marry me with Octavius

    (30) Caesar, and companion me with my mistress.

    SOOTHSAYER You shall outlive the lady whom you serve.

    CHARMIAN O excellent! I love long life better than figs.

    SOOTHSAYER You have seen and proved a fairer former fortune

     Than that which is to approach.

    CHARMIAN Then belike my children shall have no names:

     prithee, how many boys and wenches must I have?

    SOOTHSAYER If every of your wishes had a womb.

     And fertile every wish, a million.

    (40) CHARMIAN Out, fool! I forgive thee for a witch.

    ALEXAS You think none but your sheets are privy to your wishes.

    CHARMIAN Nay, come, tell Iras hers.

    ALEXAS We'll know all our fortunes.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Mine, and most of our fortunes, to-night, shall

     be--drunk to bed.

    IRAS There's a palm presages chastity, if nothing else.

    (50) CHARMIAN E'en as the o'erflowing Nilus presageth famine.

    IRAS Go, you wild bedfellow, you cannot soothsay.

    CHARMIAN Nay, if an oily palm be not a fruitful

     prognostication, I cannot scratch mine ear. Prithee,

     tell her but a worky-day fortune.

    SOOTHSAYER Your fortunes are alike.

    IRAS But how, but how? give me particulars.

    SOOTHSAYER I have said.

    (60) IRAS Am I not an inch of fortune better than she?

    CHARMIAN Well, if you were but an inch of fortune better than

     I, where would you choose it?

    IRAS Not in my husband's nose.

    CHARMIAN Our worser thoughts heavens mend! Alexas,--come,

     his fortune, his fortune! O, let him marry a woman

     that cannot go, sweet Isis, I beseech thee! and let

     her die too, and give him a worse! and let worst

     follow worse, till the worst of all follow him

     laughing to his grave, fifty-fold a cuckold! Good

    (70) Isis, hear me this prayer, though thou deny me a

     matter of more weight; good Isis, I beseech thee!

    IRAS Amen. Dear goddess, hear that prayer of the people!

     for, as it is a heartbreaking to see a handsome man

     loose-wived, so it is a deadly sorrow to behold a

     foul knave uncuckolded: therefore, dear Isis, keep

     decorum, and fortune him accordingly!

    CHARMIAN Amen.

    ALEXAS Lo, now, if it lay in their hands to make me a

     cuckold, they would make themselves whores, but

     they'ld do't!

    (80) DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Hush! here comes Antony.

    CHARMIAN Not he; the queen.

     [Enter CLEOPATRA]

    CLEOPATRA Saw you my lord?

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS                   No, lady.

    CLEOPATRA Was he not here?

    CHARMIAN No, madam.

    CLEOPATRA He was disposed to mirth; but on the sudden

     A Roman thought hath struck him. Enobarbus!


    CLEOPATRA Seek him, and bring him hither.

     Where's Alexas?

    (90) ALEXAS Here, at your service. My lord approaches.

    CLEOPATRA We will not look upon him: go with us.



    MESSENGER Fulvia thy wife first came into the field.

    MARK ANTONY Against my brother Lucius?


     But soon that war had end, and the time's state

     Made friends of them, joining their force 'gainst Caesar;

     Whose better issue in the war, from Italy,

     Upon the first encounter, drave them.

    MARK ANTONY Well, what worst?

    MESSENGER The nature of bad news infects the teller.

    (100) MARK ANTONY When it concerns the fool or coward. On:

     Things that are past are done with me. 'Tis thus:

     Who tells me true, though in his tale lie death,

     I hear him as he flatter'd.

    MESSENGER Labienus--

     This is stiff news--hath, with his Parthian force,

     Extended Asia from Euphrates;

     His conquering banner shook from Syria

     To Lydia and to Ionia; Whilst--

    MARK ANTONY Antony, thou wouldst say,--

    MESSENGER O, my lord!

    MARK ANTONY Speak to me home, mince not the general tongue:

    (110) Name Cleopatra as she is call'd in Rome;

     Rail thou in Fulvia's phrase; and taunt my faults

     With such full licence as both truth and malice

     Have power to utter. O, then we bring forth weeds,

     When our quick minds lie still; and our ills told us

     Is as our earing. Fare thee well awhile.

    MESSENGER At your noble pleasure.


    MARK ANTONY From Sicyon, ho, the news! Speak there!

    FIRST ATTENDANT The man from Sicyon,--is there such an one?

    SECOND ATTENDANT He stays upon your will.

    MARK ANTONY Let him appear.

    (120) These strong Egyptian fetters I must break,

     Or lose myself in dotage.

     [Enter another MESSENGER]

          What are you?

    SECOND MESSENGER Fulvia thy wife is dead.

    MARK ANTONY Where died she?


     Her length of sickness, with what else more serious

     Importeth thee to know, this bears.

     [Gives a letter]

    MARK ANTONY Forbear me.


     There's a great spirit gone! Thus did I desire it:

     What our contempt doth often hurl from us,

     We wish it ours again; the present pleasure,

     By revolution lowering, does become

    (130) The opposite of itself: she's good, being gone;

     The hand could pluck her back that shoved her on.

     I must from this enchanting queen break off:

     Ten thousand harms, more than the ills I know,

     My idleness doth hatch. How now! Enobarbus!


    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS What's your pleasure, sir?

    MARK ANTONY I must with haste from hence.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Why, then, we kill all our women:

     we see how mortal an unkindness is to them;

     if they suffer our departure, death's the word.

    (140) MARK ANTONY I must be gone.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Under a compelling occasion, let women die; it were

     pity to cast them away for nothing; though, between

     them and a great cause, they should be esteemed

     nothing. Cleopatra, catching but the least noise of

     this, dies instantly; I have seen her die twenty

     times upon far poorer moment: I do think there is

     mettle in death, which commits some loving act upon

     her, she hath such a celerity in dying.

    (150) MARK ANTONY She is cunning past man's thought.

     [Exit ALEXAS]

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Alack, sir, no; her passions are made of nothing but

     the finest part of pure love: we cannot call her

     winds and waters sighs and tears; they are greater

     storms and tempests than almanacs can report: this

     cannot be cunning in her; if it be, she makes a

     shower of rain as well as Jove.

    MARK ANTONY Would I had never seen her.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS O, sir, you had then left unseen a wonderful piece

    (160) of work; which not to have been blest withal would

     have discredited your travel.

    MARK ANTONY Fulvia is dead.


    MARK ANTONY Fulvia is dead.



    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Why, sir, give the gods a thankful sacrifice. When

     it pleaseth their deities to take the wife of a man

     from him, it shows to man the tailors of the earth;

    (170) comforting therein, that when old robes are worn

     out, there are members to make new. If there were

     no more women but Fulvia, then had you indeed a cut,

     and the case to be lamented: this grief is crowned

     with consolation; your old smock brings forth a new

     petticoat: and indeed the tears live in an onion

     that should water this sorrow.

    MARK ANTONY The business she hath broached in the state

     Cannot endure my absence.

    (180) DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS And the business you have broached here cannot be

     without you; especially that of Cleopatra's, which

     wholly depends on your abode.

    MARK ANTONY No more light answers. Let our officers

     Have notice what we purpose. I shall break

     The cause of our expedience to the queen,

     And get her leave to part. For not alone

     The death of Fulvia, with more urgent touches,

     Do strongly speak to us; but the letters too

     Of many our contriving friends in Rome

    (190) Petition us at home: Sextus Pompeius

     Hath given the dare to Caesar, and commands

     The empire of the sea: our slippery people,

     Whose love is never link'd to the deserver

     Till his deserts are past, begin to throw

     Pompey the Great and all his dignities

     Upon his son; who, high in name and power,

     Higher than both in blood and life, stands up

     For the main soldier: whose quality, going on,

     The sides o' the world may danger: much is breeding,

    (200) Which, like the courser's hair, hath yet but life,

     And not a serpent's poison. Say, our pleasure,

     To such whose place is under us, requires

     Our quick remove from hence.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS I shall do't.


    SCENE III The same. Another room.


    (1) CLEOPATRA Where is he?

    CHARMIAN                   I did not see him since.

    CLEOPATRA See where he is, who's with him, what he does:

     I did not send you: if you find him sad,

     Say I am dancing; if in mirth, report

     That I am sudden sick: quick, and return.

     [Exit ALEXAS]

    CHARMIAN Madam, methinks, if you did love him dearly,

     You do not hold the method to enforce

     The like from him.

    CLEOPATRA                   What should I do, I do not?

    CHARMIAN In each thing give him way, cross him nothing.

    (10) CLEOPATRA Thou teachest like a fool; the way to lose him.

    CHARMIAN Tempt him not so too far; I wish, forbear:

     In time we hate that which we often fear.

     But here comes Antony.

     [Enter MARK ANTONY]

    CLEOPATRA I am sick and sullen.

    MARK ANTONY I am sorry to give breathing to my purpose,--

    CLEOPATRA Help me away, dear Charmian; I shall fall:

     It cannot be thus long, the sides of nature

     Will not sustain it.

    MARK ANTONY Now, my dearest queen,--

    CLEOPATRA Pray you, stand further from me.

    MARK ANTONY What's the matter?

    CLEOPATRA I know, by that same eye, there's some good news.

    (20) What says the married woman? You may go:

     Would she had never given you leave to come!

     Let her not say 'tis I that keep you here:

     I have no power upon you; hers you are.

    MARK ANTONY The gods best know,--

    CLEOPATRA O, never was there queen

     So mightily betray'd! yet at the first

     I saw the treasons planted.

    MARK ANTONY Cleopatra,--

    CLEOPATRA Why should I think you can be mine and true,

     Though you in swearing shake the throned gods,

     Who have been false to Fulvia? Riotous madness,

    (30) To be entangled with those mouth-made vows,

     Which break themselves in swearing!

    MARK ANTONY Most sweet queen,--

    CLEOPATRA Nay, pray you, seek no colour for your going,

     But bid farewell, and go: when you sued staying,

     Then was the time for words: no going then;

     Eternity was in our lips and eyes,

     Bliss in our brows' bent; none our parts so poor,

     But was a race of heaven: they are so still,

     Or thou, the greatest soldier of the world,

     Art turn'd the greatest liar.

    MARK ANTONY How now, lady!

    (40) CLEOPATRA I would I had thy inches; thou shouldst know

     There were a heart in Egypt.

    MARK ANTONY Hear me, queen:

     The strong necessity of time commands

     Our services awhile; but my full heart

     Remains in use with you. Our Italy

     Shines o'er with civil swords: Sextus Pompeius

     Makes his approaches to the port of Rome:

     Equality of two domestic powers

     Breed scrupulous faction: the hated, grown to strength,

     Are newly grown to love: the condemn'd Pompey,

    (50) Rich in his father's honour, creeps apace,

     Into the hearts of such as have not thrived

     Upon the present state, whose numbers threaten;

     And quietness, grown sick of rest, would purge

     By any desperate change: my more particular,

     And that which most with you should safe my going,

     Is Fulvia's death.

    CLEOPATRA Though age from folly could not give me freedom,

     It does from childishness: can Fulvia die?

    MARK ANTONY She's dead, my queen:

    (60) Look here, and at thy sovereign leisure read

     The garboils she awaked; at the last, best:

     See when and where she died.

    CLEOPATRA O most false love!

     Where be the sacred vials thou shouldst fill

     With sorrowful water? Now I see, I see,

     In Fulvia's death, how mine received shall be.

    MARK ANTONY Quarrel no more, but be prepared to know

     The purposes I bear; which are, or cease,

     As you shall give the advice. By the fire

     That quickens Nilus' slime, I go from hence

    (70) Thy soldier, servant; making peace or war

     As thou affect'st.

    CLEOPATRA                   Cut my lace, Charmian, come;

     But let it be: I am quickly ill, and well,

     So Antony loves.

    MARK ANTONY                   My precious queen, forbear;

     And give true evidence to his love, which stands

     An honourable trial.

    CLEOPATRA So Fulvia told me.

     I prithee, turn aside and weep for her,

     Then bid adieu to me, and say the tears

     Belong to Egypt: good now, play one scene

     Of excellent dissembling; and let it look

     Life perfect honour.

    (80) MARK ANTONY You'll heat my blood: no more.

    CLEOPATRA You can do better yet; but this is meetly.

    MARK ANTONY Now, by my sword,--

    CLEOPATRA And target. Still he mends;

     But this is not the best. Look, prithee, Charmian,

     How this Herculean Roman does become

     The carriage of his chafe.

    MARK ANTONY I'll leave you, lady.

    CLEOPATRA Courteous lord, one word.

     Sir, you and I must part, but that's not it:

     Sir, you and I have loved, but there's not it;

     That you know well: something it is I would,

    (90) O, my oblivion is a very Antony,

     And I am all forgotten.

    MARK ANTONY But that your royalty

     Holds idleness your subject, I should take you

     For idleness itself.

    CLEOPATRA 'Tis sweating labour

     To bear such idleness so near the heart

     As Cleopatra this. But, sir, forgive me;

     Since my becomings kill me, when they do not

     Eye well to you: your honour calls you hence;

     Therefore be deaf to my unpitied folly.

     And all the gods go with you! upon your sword

    (100) Sit laurel victory! and smooth success

     Be strew'd before your feet!

    MARK ANTONY Let us go. Come;

     Our separation so abides, and flies,

     That thou, residing here, go'st yet with me,

     And I, hence fleeting, here remain with thee. Away!


    SCENE IV Rome. Octavius Caesar's house.

     [Enter OCTAVIUS CAESAR, reading a letter, LEPIDUS, and their Train]

    (1) OCTAVIUS CAESAR You may see, Lepidus, and henceforth know,

     It is not Caesar's natural vice to hate

     Our great competitor: from Alexandria

     This is the news: he fishes, drinks, and wastes

     The lamps of night in revel; is not more man-like

     Than Cleopatra; nor the queen of Ptolemy

     More womanly than he; hardly gave audience, or

     Vouchsafed to think he had partners: you shall find there

     A man who is the abstract of all faults

     That all men follow.

    (10) LEPIDUS I must not think there are

     Evils enow to darken all his goodness:

     His faults in him seem as the spots of heaven,

     More fiery by night's blackness; hereditary,

     Rather than purchased; what he cannot change,

     Than what he chooses.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR You are too indulgent. Let us grant, it is not

     Amiss to tumble on the bed of Ptolemy;

     To give a kingdom for a mirth; to sit

     And keep the turn of tippling with a slave;

    (20) To reel the streets at noon, and stand the buffet

     With knaves that smell of sweat: say this

     becomes him,--

     As his composure must be rare indeed

     Whom these things cannot blemish,--yet must Antony

     No way excuse his soils, when we do bear

     So great weight in his lightness. If he fill'd

     His vacancy with his voluptuousness,

     Full surfeits, and the dryness of his bones,

     Call on him for't: but to confound such time,

     That drums him from his sport, and speaks as loud

    (30) As his own state and ours,--'tis to be chid

     As we rate boys, who, being mature in knowledge,

     Pawn their experience to their present pleasure,

     And so rebel to judgment.

     [Enter a MESSENGER]

    LEPIDUS Here's more news.

    MESSENGER Thy biddings have been done; and every hour,

     Most noble Caesar, shalt thou have report

     How 'tis abroad. Pompey is strong at sea;

     And it appears he is beloved of those

     That only have fear'd Caesar: to the ports

     The discontents repair, and men's reports

     Give him much wrong'd.

    (40) OCTAVIUS CAESAR I should have known no less.

     It hath been taught us from the primal state,

     That he which is was wish'd until he were;

     And the ebb'd man, ne'er loved till ne'er worth love,

     Comes dear'd by being lack'd. This common body,

     Like to a vagabond flag upon the stream,

     Goes to and back, lackeying the varying tide,

     To rot itself with motion.

    MESSENGER Caesar, I bring thee word,

     Menecrates and Menas, famous pirates,

     Make the sea serve them, which they ear and wound

    (50) With keels of every kind: many hot inroads

     They make in Italy; the borders maritime

     Lack blood to think on't, and flush youth revolt:

     No vessel can peep forth, but 'tis as soon

     Taken as seen; for Pompey's name strikes more

     Than could his war resisted.


     Leave thy lascivious wassails. When thou once

     Wast beaten from Modena, where thou slew'st

     Hirtius and Pansa, consuls, at thy heel

     Did famine follow; whom thou fought'st against,

    (60) Though daintily brought up, with patience more

     Than savages could suffer: thou didst drink

     The stale of horses, and the gilded puddle

     Which beasts would cough at: thy palate then did deign

     The roughest berry on the rudest hedge;

     Yea, like the stag, when snow the pasture sheets,

     The barks of trees thou browsed'st; on the Alps

     It is reported thou didst eat strange flesh,

     Which some did die to look on: and all this--

     It wounds thine honour that I speak it now--

    (70) Was borne so like a soldier, that thy cheek

     So much as lank'd not.

    LEPIDUS 'Tis pity of him.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Let his shames quickly

     Drive him to Rome: 'tis time we twain

     Did show ourselves i' the field; and to that end

     Assemble we immediate council: Pompey

     Thrives in our idleness.

    LEPIDUS To-morrow, Caesar,

     I shall be furnish'd to inform you rightly

     Both what by sea and land I can be able

     To front this present time.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Till which encounter,

    (80) It is my business too. Farewell.

    LEPIDUS Farewell, my lord: what you shall know meantime

     Of stirs abroad, I shall beseech you, sir,

     To let me be partaker.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Doubt not, sir;

     I knew it for my bond.


    SCENE V Alexandria. Cleopatra's palace.


    (1) CLEOPATRA Charmian!

    CHARMIAN Madam?

    CLEOPATRA Ha, ha!

     Give me to drink mandragora.

    CHARMIAN Why, madam?

    CLEOPATRA That I might sleep out this great gap of time

     My Antony is away.

    CHARMIAN                   You think of him too much.

    CLEOPATRA O, 'tis treason!

    CHARMIAN                   Madam, I trust, not so.

    CLEOPATRA Thou, eunuch Mardian!

    MARDIAN What's your highness' pleasure?

    CLEOPATRA Not now to hear thee sing; I take no pleasure

    (10) In aught an eunuch has: 'tis well for thee,

     That, being unseminar'd, thy freer thoughts

     May not fly forth of Egypt. Hast thou affections?

    MARDIAN Yes, gracious madam.

    CLEOPATRA Indeed!

    MARDIAN Not in deed, madam; for I can do nothing

     But what indeed is honest to be done:

     Yet have I fierce affections, and think

     What Venus did with Mars.

    CLEOPATRA O Charmian,

     Where think'st thou he is now? Stands he, or sits he?

    (20) Or does he walk? or is he on his horse?

     O happy horse, to bear the weight of Antony!

     Do bravely, horse! for wot'st thou whom thou movest?

     The demi-Atlas of this earth, the arm

     And burgonet of men. He's speaking now,

     Or murmuring 'Where's my serpent of old Nile?'

     For so he calls me: now I feed myself

     With most delicious poison. Think on me,

     That am with Phoebus' amorous pinches black,

     And wrinkled deep in time? Broad-fronted Caesar,

    (30) When thou wast here above the ground, I was

     A morsel for a monarch: and great Pompey

     Would stand and make his eyes grow in my brow;

     There would he anchor his aspect and die

     With looking on his life.


    ALEXAS Sovereign of Egypt, hail!

    CLEOPATRA How much unlike art thou Mark Antony!

     Yet, coming from him, that great medicine hath

     With his tinct gilded thee.

     How goes it with my brave Mark Antony?

    ALEXAS Last thing he did, dear queen,

    (40) He kiss'd,--the last of many doubled kisses,--

     This orient pearl. His speech sticks in my heart.

    CLEOPATRA Mine ear must pluck it thence.

    ALEXAS 'Good friend,' quoth he,

     'Say, the firm Roman to great Egypt sends

     This treasure of an oyster; at whose foot,

     To mend the petty present, I will piece

     Her opulent throne with kingdoms; all the east,

     Say thou, shall call her mistress.' So he nodded,

     And soberly did mount an arm-gaunt steed,

     Who neigh'd so high, that what I would have spoke

     Was beastly dumb'd by him.

    (50) CLEOPATRA What, was he sad or merry?

    ALEXAS Like to the time o' the year between the extremes

     Of hot and cold, he was nor sad nor merry.

    CLEOPATRA O well-divided disposition! Note him,

     Note him good Charmian, 'tis the man; but note him:

     He was not sad, for he would shine on those

     That make their looks by his; he was not merry,

     Which seem'd to tell them his remembrance lay

     In Egypt with his joy; but between both:

     O heavenly mingle! Be'st thou sad or merry,

    (60) The violence of either thee becomes,

     So does it no man else. Met'st thou my posts?

    ALEXAS Ay, madam, twenty several messengers:

     Why do you send so thick?

    CLEOPATRA Who's born that day

     When I forget to send to Antony,

     Shall die a beggar. Ink and paper, Charmian.

     Welcome, my good Alexas. Did I, Charmian,

     Ever love Caesar so?

    CHARMIAN O that brave Caesar!

    CLEOPATRA Be choked with such another emphasis!

     Say, the brave Antony.

    CHARMIAN The valiant Caesar!

    (70) CLEOPATRA By Isis, I will give thee bloody teeth,

     If thou with Caesar paragon again

     My man of men.

    CHARMIAN                   By your most gracious pardon,

     I sing but after you.

    CLEOPATRA My salad days,

     When I was green in judgment: cold in blood,

     To say as I said then! But, come, away;

     Get me ink and paper:

     He shall have every day a several greeting,

     Or I'll unpeople Egypt.


    ACT II

    SCENE I Messina. Pompey's house.

     [Enter POMPEY, MENECRATES, and MENAS, in warlike manner]

    (1) POMPEY If the great gods be just, they shall assist

     The deeds of justest men.

    MENECRATES Know, worthy Pompey,

     That what they do delay, they not deny.

    POMPEY Whiles we are suitors to their throne, decays

     The thing we sue for.

    MENECRATES We, ignorant of ourselves,

     Beg often our own harms, which the wise powers

     Deny us for our good; so find we profit

     By losing of our prayers.

    POMPEY I shall do well:

     The people love me, and the sea is mine;

    (10) My powers are crescent, and my auguring hope

     Says it will come to the full. Mark Antony

     In Egypt sits at dinner, and will make

     No wars without doors: Caesar gets money where

     He loses hearts: Lepidus flatters both,

     Of both is flatter'd; but he neither loves,

     Nor either cares for him.

    MENAS Caesar and Lepidus

     Are in the field: a mighty strength they carry.

    POMPEY Where have you this? 'tis false.

    MENAS From Silvius, sir.

    POMPEY He dreams: I know they are in Rome together,

    (20) Looking for Antony. But all the charms of love,

     Salt Cleopatra, soften thy waned lip!

     Let witchcraft join with beauty, lust with both!

     Tie up the libertine in a field of feasts,

     Keep his brain fuming; Epicurean cooks

     Sharpen with cloyless sauce his appetite;

     That sleep and feeding may prorogue his honour

     Even till a Lethe'd dulness!

     [Enter VARRIUS]

             How now, Varrius!

    VARRIUS This is most certain that I shall deliver:

     Mark Antony is every hour in Rome

    (30) Expected: since he went from Egypt 'tis

     A space for further travel.

    POMPEY I could have given less matter

     A better ear. Menas, I did not think

     This amorous surfeiter would have donn'd his helm

     For such a petty war: his soldiership

     Is twice the other twain: but let us rear

     The higher our opinion, that our stirring

     Can from the lap of Egypt's widow pluck

     The ne'er-lust-wearied Antony.

    MENAS I cannot hope

     Caesar and Antony shall well greet together:

    (40) His wife that's dead did trespasses to Caesar;

     His brother warr'd upon him; although, I think,

     Not moved by Antony.

    POMPEY I know not, Menas,

     How lesser enmities may give way to greater.

     Were't not that we stand up against them all,

     'Twere pregnant they should square between


     For they have entertained cause enough

     To draw their swords: but how the fear of us

     May cement their divisions and bind up

     The petty difference, we yet not know.

    (50) Be't as our gods will have't! It only stands

     Our lives upon to use our strongest hands.

     Come, Menas.


    SCENE II Rome. The house of Lepidus.


    (1) LEPIDUS Good Enobarbus, 'tis a worthy deed,

     And shall become you well, to entreat your captain

     To soft and gentle speech.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS I shall entreat him

     To answer like himself: if Caesar move him,

     Let Antony look over Caesar's head

     And speak as loud as Mars. By Jupiter,

     Were I the wearer of Antonius' beard,

     I would not shave't to-day.

    LEPIDUS 'Tis not a time

     For private stomaching.


    (10) Serves for the matter that is then born in't.

    LEPIDUS But small to greater matters must give way.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Not if the small come first.

    LEPIDUS Your speech is passion:

     But, pray you, stir no embers up. Here comes

     The noble Antony.


    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS                   And yonder, Caesar.


    MARK ANTONY If we compose well here, to Parthia:

     Hark, Ventidius.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR                   I do not know,

     Mecaenas; ask Agrippa.

    LEPIDUS Noble friends,

     That which combined us was most great, and let not

     A leaner action rend us. What's amiss,

    (20) May it be gently heard: when we debate

     Our trivial difference loud, we do commit

     Murder in healing wounds: then, noble partners,

     The rather, for I earnestly beseech,

     Touch you the sourest points with sweetest terms,

     Nor curstness grow to the matter.

    MARK ANTONY 'Tis spoken well.

     Were we before our armies, and to fight.

     I should do thus.


    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Welcome to Rome.

    MARK ANTONY                   Thank you.


    MARK ANTONY Sit, sir.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Nay, then.

    MARK ANTONY I learn, you take things ill which are not so,

     Or being, concern you not.

    (30) OCTAVIUS CAESAR I must be laugh'd at,

     If, or for nothing or a little, I

     Should say myself offended, and with you

     Chiefly i' the world; more laugh'd at, that I should

     Once name you derogately, when to sound your name

     It not concern'd me.

    MARK ANTONY My being in Egypt, Caesar,

     What was't to you?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR No more than my residing here at Rome

     Might be to you in Egypt: yet, if you there

     Did practise on my state, your being in Egypt

     Might be my question.

    (40) MARK ANTONY How intend you, practised?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR You may be pleased to catch at mine intent

     By what did here befal me. Your wife and brother

     Made wars upon me; and their contestation

     Was theme for you, you were the word of war.

    MARK ANTONY You do mistake your business; my brother never

     Did urge me in his act: I did inquire it;

     And have my learning from some true reports,

     That drew their swords with you. Did he not rather

     Discredit my authority with yours;

    (50) And make the wars alike against my stomach,

     Having alike your cause? Of this my letters

     Before did satisfy you. If you'll patch a quarrel,

     As matter whole you have not to make it with,

     It must not be with this.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR You praise yourself

     By laying defects of judgment to me; but

     You patch'd up your excuses.

    MARK ANTONY Not so, not so;

     I know you could not lack, I am certain on't,

     Very necessity of this thought, that I,

     Your partner in the cause 'gainst which he fought,

    (60) Could not with graceful eyes attend those wars

     Which fronted mine own peace. As for my wife,

     I would you had her spirit in such another:

     The third o' the world is yours; which with a snaffle

     You may pace easy, but not such a wife.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Would we had all such wives, that the men might go

     to wars with the women!

    MARK ANTONY So much uncurbable, her garboils, Caesar

     Made out of her impatience, which not wanted

     Shrewdness of policy too, I grieving grant

    (70) Did you too much disquiet: for that you must

     But say, I could not help it.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR I wrote to you

     When rioting in Alexandria; you

     Did pocket up my letters, and with taunts

     Did gibe my missive out of audience.


     He fell upon me ere admitted: then

     Three kings I had newly feasted, and did want

     Of what I was i' the morning: but next day

     I told him of myself; which was as much

     As to have ask'd him pardon. Let this fellow

    (80) Be nothing of our strife; if we contend,

     Out of our question wipe him.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR You have broken

     The article of your oath; which you shall never

     Have tongue to charge me with.

    LEPIDUS Soft, Caesar!


     Lepidus, let him speak:

     The honour is sacred which he talks on now,

     Supposing that I lack'd it. But, on, Caesar;

     The article of my oath.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR To lend me arms and aid when I required them;

     The which you both denied.

    MARK ANTONY Neglected, rather;

    (90) And then when poison'd hours had bound me up

     From mine own knowledge. As nearly as I may,

     I'll play the penitent to you: but mine honesty

     Shall not make poor my greatness, nor my power

     Work without it. Truth is, that Fulvia,

     To have me out of Egypt, made wars here;

     For which myself, the ignorant motive, do

     So far ask pardon as befits mine honour

     To stoop in such a case.

    LEPIDUS 'Tis noble spoken.

    MECAENAS If it might please you, to enforce no further

    (100) The griefs between ye: to forget them quite

     Were to remember that the present need

     Speaks to atone you.

    LEPIDUS Worthily spoken, Mecaenas.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Or, if you borrow one another's love for the

     instant, you may, when you hear no more words of

     Pompey, return it again: you shall have time to

     wrangle in when you have nothing else to do.

    MARK ANTONY Thou art a soldier only: speak no more.

    (110) DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS That truth should be silent I had almost forgot.

    MARK ANTONY You wrong this presence; therefore speak no more.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Go to, then; your considerate stone.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR I do not much dislike the matter, but

     The manner of his speech; for't cannot be

     We shall remain in friendship, our conditions

     So differing in their acts. Yet if I knew

     What hoop should hold us stanch, from edge to edge

     O' the world I would pursue it.

    AGRIPPA Give me leave, Caesar,--

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Speak, Agrippa.

    (120) AGRIPPA Thou hast a sister by the mother's side,

     Admired Octavia: great Mark Antony

     Is now a widower.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR                   Say not so, Agrippa:

     If Cleopatra heard you, your reproof

     Were well deserved of rashness.

    MARK ANTONY I am not married, Caesar: let me hear

     Agrippa further speak.

    AGRIPPA To hold you in perpetual amity,

     To make you brothers, and to knit your hearts

     With an unslipping knot, take Antony

    (130) Octavia to his wife; whose beauty claims

     No worse a husband than the best of men;

     Whose virtue and whose general graces speak

     That which none else can utter. By this marriage,

     All little jealousies, which now seem great,

     And all great fears, which now import their dangers,

     Would then be nothing: truths would be tales,

     Where now half tales be truths: her love to both

     Would, each to other and all loves to both,

     Draw after her. Pardon what I have spoke;

    (140) For 'tis a studied, not a present thought,

     By duty ruminated.

    MARK ANTONY                   Will Caesar speak?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Not till he hears how Antony is touch'd

     With what is spoke already.

    MARK ANTONY What power is in Agrippa,

     If I would say, 'Agrippa, be it so,'

     To make this good?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR                   The power of Caesar, and

     His power unto Octavia.

    MARK ANTONY May I never

     To this good purpose, that so fairly shows,

     Dream of impediment! Let me have thy hand:

     Further this act of grace: and from this hour

    (150) The heart of brothers govern in our loves

     And sway our great designs!

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR There is my hand.

     A sister I bequeath you, whom no brother

     Did ever love so dearly: let her live

     To join our kingdoms and our hearts; and never

     Fly off our loves again!

    LEPIDUS Happily, amen!

    MARK ANTONY I did not think to draw my sword 'gainst Pompey;

     For he hath laid strange courtesies and great

     Of late upon me: I must thank him only,

     Lest my remembrance suffer ill report;

     At heel of that, defy him.

    (160) LEPIDUS Time calls upon's:

     Of us must Pompey presently be sought,

     Or else he seeks out us.

    MARK ANTONY Where lies he?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR About the mount Misenum.

    MARK ANTONY What is his strength by land?

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Great and increasing: but by sea

     He is an absolute master.

    MARK ANTONY So is the fame.

     Would we had spoke together! Haste we for it:

     Yet, ere we put ourselves in arms, dispatch we

     The business we have talk'd of.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR With most gladness:

    (170) And do invite you to my sister's view,

     Whither straight I'll lead you.

    MARK ANTONY Let us, Lepidus,

     Not lack your company.

    LEPIDUS Noble Antony,

     Not sickness should detain me.


    MECAENAS Welcome from Egypt, sir.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Half the heart of Caesar, worthy Mecaenas! My

     honourable friend, Agrippa!

    AGRIPPA Good Enobarbus!

    MECAENAS We have cause to be glad that matters are so well

    (180) digested. You stayed well by 't in Egypt.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Ay, sir; we did sleep day out of countenance, and

     made the night light with drinking.

    MECAENAS Eight wild-boars roasted whole at a breakfast, and

     but twelve persons there; is this true?

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS This was but as a fly by an eagle: we had much more

     monstrous matter of feast, which worthily deserved noting.

    (190) MECAENAS She's a most triumphant lady, if report be square to


    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS When she first met Mark Antony, she pursed up

     his heart, upon the river of Cydnus.

    AGRIPPA There she appeared indeed; or my reporter devised

     well for her.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS I will tell you.

     The barge she sat in, like a burnish'd throne,

     Burn'd on the water: the poop was beaten gold;

     Purple the sails, and so perfumed that

     The winds were love-sick with them; the oars were silver,

    (200) Which to the tune of flutes kept stroke, and made

     The water which they beat to follow faster,

     As amorous of their strokes. For her own person,

     It beggar'd all description: she did lie

     In her pavilion--cloth-of-gold of tissue--

     O'er-picturing that Venus where we see

     The fancy outwork nature: on each side her

     Stood pretty dimpled boys, like smiling Cupids,

     With divers-colour'd fans, whose wind did seem

     To glow the delicate cheeks which they did cool,

     And what they undid did.

    (210) AGRIPPA O, rare for Antony!

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Her gentlewomen, like the Nereides,

     So many mermaids, tended her i' the eyes,

     And made their bends adornings: at the helm

     A seeming mermaid steers: the silken tackle

     Swell with the touches of those flower-soft hands,

     That yarely frame the office. From the barge

     A strange invisible perfume hits the sense

     Of the adjacent wharfs. The city cast

     Her people out upon her; and Antony,

    (220) Enthroned i' the market-place, did sit alone,

     Whistling to the air; which, but for vacancy,

     Had gone to gaze on Cleopatra too,

     And made a gap in nature.

    AGRIPPA Rare Egyptian!

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Upon her landing, Antony sent to her,

     Invited her to supper: she replied,

     It should be better he became her guest;

     Which she entreated: our courteous Antony,

     Whom ne'er the word of 'No' woman heard speak,

     Being barber'd ten times o'er, goes to the feast,

    (230) And for his ordinary pays his heart

     For what his eyes eat only.

    AGRIPPA Royal wench!

     She made great Caesar lay his sword to bed:

     He plough'd her, and she cropp'd.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS I saw her once

     Hop forty paces through the public street;

     And having lost her breath, she spoke, and panted,

     That she did make defect perfection,

     And, breathless, power breathe forth.

    MECAENAS Now Antony must leave her utterly.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Never; he will not:

    (240) Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale

     Her infinite variety: other women cloy

     The appetites they feed: but she makes hungry

     Where most she satisfies; for vilest things

     Become themselves in her: that the holy priests

     Bless her when she is riggish.

    MECAENAS If beauty, wisdom, modesty, can settle

     The heart of Antony, Octavia is

     A blessed lottery to him.

    AGRIPPA Let us go.

     Good Enobarbus, make yourself my guest

    (250) Whilst you abide here.

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS Humbly, sir, I thank you.


    SCENE III The same. Octavius Caesar's house.


    (1) MARK ANTONY The world and my great office will sometimes

     Divide me from your bosom.

    OCTAVIA All which time

     Before the gods my knee shall bow my prayers

     To them for you.

    MARK ANTONY                   Good night, sir. My Octavia,

     Read not my blemishes in the world's report:

     I have not kept my square; but that to come

     Shall all be done by the rule. Good night, dear lady.

     Good night, sir.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Good night.


     [Enter SOOTHSAYER]

    (10) MARK ANTONY Now, sirrah; you do wish yourself in Egypt?

    SOOTHSAYER Would I had never come from thence, nor you Thither!

    MARK ANTONY If you can, your reason?

    SOOTHSAYER I see it in

     My motion, have it not in my tongue: but yet

     Hie you to Egypt again.

    MARK ANTONY Say to me,

     Whose fortunes shall rise higher, Caesar's or mine?

    SOOTHSAYER Caesar's.

     Therefore, O Antony, stay not by his side:

     Thy demon, that's thy spirit which keeps thee, is

    (20) Noble, courageous high, unmatchable,

     Where Caesar's is not; but, near him, thy angel

     Becomes a fear, as being o'erpower'd: therefore

     Make space enough between you.

    MARK ANTONY Speak this no more.

    SOOTHSAYER To none but thee; no more, but when to thee.

     If thou dost play with him at any game,

     Thou art sure to lose; and, of that natural luck,

     He beats thee 'gainst the odds: thy lustre thickens,

     When he shines by: I say again, thy spirit

     Is all afraid to govern thee near him;

     But, he away, 'tis noble.

    MARK ANTONY Get thee gone:

    (30) Say to Ventidius I would speak with him:

     [Exit SOOTHSAYER]

     He shall to Parthia. Be it art or hap,

     He hath spoken true: the very dice obey him;

     And in our sports my better cunning faints

     Under his chance: if we draw lots, he speeds;

     His cocks do win the battle still of mine,

     When it is all to nought; and his quails ever

     Beat mine, inhoop'd, at odds. I will to Egypt:

     And though I make this marriage for my peace,

     I' the east my pleasure lies.

     [Enter VENTIDIUS]

    (40)          O, come, Ventidius,

     You must to Parthia: your commission's ready;

     Follow me, and receive't.


    SCENE IV The same. A street.


    (1) LEPIDUS Trouble yourselves no further: pray you, hasten

     Your generals after.

    AGRIPPA Sir, Mark Antony

     Will e'en but kiss Octavia, and we'll follow.

    LEPIDUS Till I shall see you in your soldier's dress,

     Which will become you both, farewell.

    MECAENAS We shall,

     As I conceive the journey, be at the Mount

     Before you, Lepidus.

    LEPIDUS Your way is shorter;

     My purposes do draw me much about:

     You'll win two days upon me.

    MECAENAS and AGRIPPA Sir, good success!

    (10) LEPIDUS Farewell.


    SCENE V Alexandria. Cleopatra's palace.


    (1) CLEOPATRA Give me some music; music, moody food

     Of us that trade in love.

    ATTENDANTs The music, ho!

     [Enter MARDIAN]

    CLEOPATRA Let it alone; let's to billiards: come, Charmian.

    CHARMIAN My arm is sore; best play with Mardian.

    CLEOPATRA As well a woman with an eunuch play'd

     As with a woman. Come, you'll play with me, sir?

    MARDIAN As well as I can, madam.

    CLEOPATRA And when good will is show'd, though't come

     too short,

     The actor may plead pardon. I'll none now:

    (10) Give me mine angle; we'll to the river: there,

     My music playing far off, I will betray

     Tawny-finn'd fishes; my bended hook shall pierce

     Their slimy jaws; and, as I draw them up,

     I'll think them every one an Antony,

     And say 'Ah, ha! you're caught.'

    CHARMIAN 'Twas merry when

     You wager'd on your angling; when your diver

     Did hang a salt-fish on his hook, which he

     With fervency drew up.

    CLEOPATRA That time,--O times!--

    (20) I laugh'd him out of patience; and that night

     I laugh'd him into patience; and next morn,

     Ere the ninth hour, I drunk him to his bed;

     Then put my tires and mantles on him, whilst

     I wore his sword Philippan.

     [Enter a MESSENGER]

            O, from Italy

     Ram thou thy fruitful tidings in mine ears,

     That long time have been barren.

    MESSENGER Madam, madam,--

    CLEOPATRA Antonius dead!--If thou say so, villain,

     Thou kill'st thy mistress: but well and free,

     If thou so yield him, there is gold, and here

     My bluest veins to kiss; a hand that kings

    (30) Have lipp'd, and trembled kissing.

    MESSENGER First, madam, he is well.

    CLEOPATRA Why, there's more gold.

     But, sirrah, mark, we use

     To say the dead are well: bring it to that,

     The gold I give thee will I melt and pour

     Down thy ill-uttering throat.

    MESSENGER Good madam, hear me.

    CLEOPATRA Well, go to, I will;

     But there's no goodness in thy face: if Antony

     Be free and healthful,--so tart a favour

     To trumpet such good tidings! If not well,

    (40) Thou shouldst come like a Fury crown'd with snakes,

     Not like a formal man.

    MESSENGER Will't please you hear me?

    CLEOPATRA I have a mind to strike thee ere thou speak'st:

     Yet if thou say Antony lives, is well,

     Or friends with Caesar, or not captive to him,

     I'll set thee in a shower of gold, and hail

     Rich pearls upon thee.

    MESSENGER Madam, he's well.

    CLEOPATRA Well said.

    MESSENGER And friends with Caesar.

    CLEOPATRA Thou'rt an honest man.

    MESSENGER Caesar and he are greater friends than ever.

    CLEOPATRA Make thee a fortune from me.

    MESSENGER But yet, madam,--

    (50) CLEOPATRA I do not like 'But yet,' it does allay

     The good precedence; fie upon 'But yet'!

     'But yet' is as a gaoler to bring forth

     Some monstrous malefactor. Prithee, friend,

     Pour out the pack of matter to mine ear,

     The good and bad together: he's friends with Caesar:

     In state of health thou say'st; and thou say'st free.

    MESSENGER Free, madam! no; I made no such report:

     He's bound unto Octavia.

    CLEOPATRA For what good turn?

    MESSENGER For the best turn i' the bed.

    CLEOPATRA I am pale, Charmian.

    (60) MESSENGER Madam, he's married to Octavia.

    CLEOPATRA The most infectious pestilence upon thee!

     [Strikes him down]

    MESSENGER Good madam, patience.

    CLEOPATRA What say you? Hence,

     [Strikes him again]

     Horrible villain! or I'll spurn thine eyes

     Like balls before me; I'll unhair thy head:

     [She hales him up and down]

     Thou shalt be whipp'd with wire, and stew'd in brine,

     Smarting in lingering pickle.

    MESSENGER Gracious madam,

     I that do bring the news made not the match.

    CLEOPATRA Say 'tis not so, a province I will give thee,

     And make thy fortunes proud: the blow thou hadst

    (70) Shall make thy peace for moving me to rage;

     And I will boot thee with what gift beside

     Thy modesty can beg.

    MESSENGER He's married, madam.

    CLEOPATRA Rogue, thou hast lived too long.

     [Draws a knife]

    MESSENGER Nay, then I'll run.

     What mean you, madam? I have made no fault.


    CHARMIAN Good madam, keep yourself within yourself:

     The man is innocent.

    CLEOPATRA Some innocents 'scape not the thunderbolt.

     Melt Egypt into Nile! and kindly creatures

     Turn all to serpents! Call the slave again:

    (80) Though I am mad, I will not bite him: call.

    CHARMIAN He is afeard to come.

    CLEOPATRA I will not hurt him.

     [Exit CHARMIAN]

     These hands do lack nobility, that they strike

     A meaner than myself; since I myself

     Have given myself the cause.

     [Re-enter CHARMIAN and MESSENGER]

             Come hither, sir.

     Though it be honest, it is never good

     To bring bad news: give to a gracious message.

     An host of tongues; but let ill tidings tell

     Themselves when they be felt.

    MESSENGER I have done my duty.

    CLEOPATRA Is he married?

    (90) I cannot hate thee worser than I do,

     If thou again say 'Yes.'

    MESSENGER He's married, madam.

    CLEOPATRA The gods confound thee! dost thou hold there still?

    MESSENGER Should I lie, madam?

    CLEOPATRA O, I would thou didst,

     So half my Egypt were submerged and made

     A cistern for scaled snakes! Go, get thee hence:

     Hadst thou Narcissus in thy face, to me

     Thou wouldst appear most ugly. He is married?

    MESSENGER I crave your highness' pardon.

    CLEOPATRA He is married?

    MESSENGER Take no offence that I would not offend you:

    (100) To punish me for what you make me do.

     Seems much unequal: he's married to Octavia.

    CLEOPATRA O, that his fault should make a knave of thee,

     That art not what thou'rt sure of! Get thee hence:

     The merchandise which thou hast brought from Rome

     Are all too dear for me: lie they upon thy hand,

     And be undone by 'em!

     [Exit MESSENGER]

    CHARMIAN Good your highness, patience.

    CLEOPATRA In praising Antony, I have dispraised Caesar.

    CHARMIAN Many times, madam.

    CLEOPATRA                   I am paid for't now.

     Lead me from hence:

    (110) I faint: O Iras, Charmian! 'tis no matter.

     Go to the fellow, good Alexas; bid him

     Report the feature of Octavia, her years,

     Her inclination, let him not leave out

     The colour of her hair: bring me word quickly.

     [Exit ALEXAS]

     Let him for ever go:--let him not--Charmian,

     Though he be painted one way like a Gorgon,

     The other way's a Mars. Bid you Alexas

     [To MARDIAN]

     Bring me word how tall she is. Pity me, Charmian,

     But do not speak to me. Lead me to my chamber.


    SCENE VI Near Misenum.

     [Flourish. Enter POMPEY and MENAS at one door, with drum and trumpet: at another, OCTAVIUS CAESAR, MARK ANTONY, LEPIDUS, DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS, MECAENAS, with SOLDIERs marching]

    (1) POMPEY Your hostages I have, so have you mine;

     And we shall talk before we fight.


     That first we come to words; and therefore have we

     Our written purposes before us sent;

     Which, if thou hast consider'd, let us know

     If 'twill tie up thy discontented sword,

     And carry back to Sicily much tall youth

     That else must perish here.

    POMPEY To you all three,

     The senators alone of this great world,

    (10) Chief factors for the gods, I do not know

     Wherefore my father should revengers want,

     Having a son and friends; since Julius Caesar,

     Who at Philippi the good Brutus ghosted,

     There saw you labouring for him. What was't

     That moved pale Cassius to conspire; and what

     Made the all-honour'd, honest Roman, Brutus,

     With the arm'd rest, courtiers and beauteous freedom,

     To drench the Capitol; but that they would

     Have one man but a man? And that is it

    (20) Hath made me rig my navy; at whose burthen

     The anger'd ocean foams; with which I meant

     To scourge the ingratitude that despiteful Rome

     Cast on my noble father.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Take your time.

    MARK ANTONY Thou canst not fear us, Pompey, with thy sails;

     We'll speak with thee at sea: at land, thou know'st

     How much we do o'er-count thee.

    POMPEY At land, indeed,

     Thou dost o'er-count me of my father's house:

     But, since the cuckoo builds not for himself,

     Remain in't as thou mayst.

    LEPIDUS Be pleased to tell us--

    (30) For this is from the present--how you take

     The offers we have sent you.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR There's the point.

    MARK ANTONY Which do not be entreated to, but weigh

     What it is worth embraced.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR And what may follow,

     To try a larger fortune.

    POMPEY You have made me offer

     Of Sicily, Sardinia; and I must

     Rid all the sea of pirates; then, to send

     Measures of wheat to Rome; this 'greed upon

     To part with unhack'd edges, and bear back

     Our targes undinted.



    MARK ANTONY  and LEPIDUS That's our offer.

    (40) POMPEY Know, then,

     I came before you here a man prepared

     To take this offer: but Mark Antony

     Put me to some impatience: though I lose

     The praise of it by telling, you must know,

     When Caesar and your brother were at blows,

     Your mother came to Sicily and did find

     Her welcome friendly.

    MARK ANTONY I have heard it, Pompey;

     And am well studied for a liberal thanks

     Which I do owe you.

    POMPEY Let me have your hand:

    (50) I did not think, sir, to have met you here.

    MARK ANTONY The beds i' the east are soft; and thanks to you,

     That call'd me timelier than my purpose hither;

     For I have gain'd by 't.

    OCTAVIUS CAESAR Since I saw you last,

     There is a change upon you.

    POMPEY Well, I know not

     What counts harsh fortune casts upon my face;

     But in my bosom shall she never come,

     To make my heart her vassal.

    LEPIDUS Well met here.

    POMPEY I hope so, Lepidus. Thus we are agreed:

     I crave our composition may be written,

     And seal'd between us.

    (60) OCTAVIUS CAESAR That's the next to do.

    POMPEY We'll feast each other ere we part; and let's

     Draw lots who shall begin.

    MARK ANTONY That will I, Pompey.

    POMPEY No, Antony, take the lot: but, first

     Or last, your fine Egyptian cookery

     Shall have the fame. I have heard that Julius Caesar

     Grew fat with feasting there.

    MARK ANTONY You have heard much.

    POMPEY I have fair meanings, sir.

    MARK ANTONY And fair words to them.

    POMPEY Then so much have I heard:

     And I have heard, Apollodorus carried--

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS No more of that: he did so.

    (70) POMPEY What, I pray you?

    DOMITIUS ENOBARBUS A certain queen to Caesar in a mattress.

    POMPEY I know thee now: how farest thou, soldier?


     And well am like to do; for, I perceive,

     Four feasts are toward.

    POMPEY Let me shake thy hand;

     I never hated thee: I have seen thee fight,

     When I have envied thy behavior.


     I never loved you much; but I ha' praised ye,

     When you have well deserved ten times as

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